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Director:  Ciro Guerra

Writer:  JM Coetzee (Novel)

Producer: Michael Fitzgerald and Olga Segura with AMBI Group’s Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi

Cinematographer:  Chris Menges 

Role:  Officer Mandel

Costars:  Mark Rylance (Magistrate),  Johnny Depp (Colonel Joll), Gana Bayarsaikhan (Barbarian Girl), Harry Melling (??), Hami Belal (Joll’s #1 Man)

Production Co:  Ithaca Pictures, Infinitum Nihil (Johnny Depp), TaTaTu (Andrea Iervolino)

Sales Rep:  AMBI Distribution Worldwide; Paradigm Talent Agency

World Premiere: Venice Film Festival 2019 (In Competition)

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International Release Dates and Film Festivals




  • Benelux (One2See) – 1 Jan 2021
  • Scandinavia & Iceland (Non Stop) – now streaming
  • Egypt – 6 January
  • Saudi Arabia – 7 January
  • Netherlands (DVD) – 26 January
  • Japan (Aya Pro) – 29 January 2021
  • Italy (VOD Premiere) – 8 March 2021
  • Italy (DVD) – 9 March 2021
  • Lithuania (Kinopavasaris) – 18 March 2021
  • South America – Chile, Colombia, Venezuala, Argentina & Peru – 15 April 2021
  • Japan (DVD) – 28 May 2021
  • Portugal – 15 July 2021


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  • Gallery (Promotional Stills, Set Photos + Theatrical Posters)

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External Articles


  • Screen Daily Interview with Ciro Guerra (4 July 2017):  Guerra confirmed that his adaptation of J.M Coetzee’s Waiting For The Barbarians starring Mark Rylance, which was first reported in 2016, is still going ahead.  He said of the film: “That project is still moving forward. Hopefully it will be the first time I work in the English language. I’m open to that because of the possibility of working with great talent and an international scale but for me the most important thing is the source Material.  “Coetzee’s Waiting For The Barbarians is one of the great novels of the 20th century and there’s been a plan to make a film of it for a long time. It’s a challenge and a privilege to able to bring it to the big screen. It’s planned to shoot in 2018 and should be released in 2019.”
  • VARIETY confirms AMBI Media Group will fully fund film – slated to film fall/autumn 2018 in Europe and North Africa.


  • Optioned:  Originally 13 October 2016 and updated on 5 June 2017 via IMDbPro
  • Pre-Production as at 22 June 2018 (via IMDbPro) (Filming Morocco (Outer Posts) and Italy)
  • Filming:  29 October 2018 (Morocco) (via IMDbPro)
  • Production Wrapped:  14 December 2018
  • Post Production – 2 January 2019 (via IMDbPro)
  • Complete: 25 July 2019


  • From IMDbPro:  A British magistrate working in a small colonial town begins to question his loyalty to the Empire.
  • Novel Synopsis:  For decades the Magistrate has run the affairs of a tiny frontier settlement, ignoring the impending war between the barbarians and the Empire, whose servant he is. But when the interrogation experts arrive, he is jolted into sympathy with the victims and into a quixotic act of rebellion which lands him in prison, branded as an enemy of the state. Waiting for the Barbarians is an allegory of oppressor and oppressed. Not just a man living through a crisis of conscience in an obscure place in remote times, the Magistrate is an analogue of all men living in complicity with regimes that ignore justice and decency.
  • From Tracking Board:  The story centers on the crisis of the conscience of the magistrate—a loyal servant of the Empire working in a tiny frontier town, doing his best to ignore an inevitable war with the “barbarians.” After he witnesses the cruel and unjust treatment of prisoners of war, he reconsiders his role in the regime and carries out a quixotic act of rebellion. Rylance will place the magistrate.
  • Officer Warrant Mandel – LitCharts:  A warrant officer for the Empire, Mandel is sent to replace the magistrate’s position after the magistrate has been charged with treason (consorting with the barbarians). The magistrate describes Mandel as highly affected and self-conscious, and as putting great effort into expressing his authority in order to mask his more boyish and delicate sensibilities. Believing Mandel to hail from people of low social class, the magistrate thinks he’s adopted such heady airs in order to cover up any traces of his less-than-regal upbringing. Mandel presides over the magistrate’s imprisonment while Colonel Joll is at the front, and eventually releases him, finding the cost of imprisoning the magistrate to be no longer a justifiable expenditure.

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Rob’s Promo Schedule
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  • 29 September 2021 - Co-Chair for Academy Museum of Motion Pictures Opening Party
  • 16 October 2021- DC Fandome (10.00am PST which is 3am Sunday 17 October 2021 AEST)
  • 23 October 2021 - Virtual GO Gala (To be Confirmed)
  • Rob’s Film Schedule
    The Batman Role: Bruce Wayne | Batman
    Director: Matt Reeves
    Release Date: 4 March 2022. Filming complete 13 March 2021. Check out our film page for updated release dates by clicking "News" below.

    Tenet Role: Neil
    Director: Christopher Nolan
    Release Date: 26 August 2020 - check out our film page for all upcoming theatrical and DVD release dates by clicking on "News" below. Currently screening on Netflix

    Waiting for the Barbarians Role: Warrant Officer Mandel
    Director: Ciro Guerra
    Release Date: Australia on Digital & DVD 7 October 2020. To find other release dates head over to our dedicated film page by clicking on "News" below.

    The Devil All the Time Role: Preston Teagardin
    Director: Antonio Campos
    Release Date: 16 September 2020 - currently screening on Netflix

    The Lighthouse Role: Ephraim Winslow
    Director: Robert Eggers
    DVD releases at Film Page - click News below. Currently screening on Netflix ANZ

    The King Role: The Dauphin of France
    Director: David Michôd
    Release Date: World Premiere (Out of Competition) Venice Film Festival 2019 2 Sept 2019 | Still available on Netflix.

    Information for all of Robert's past films can also be found at RPAU's individual film pages by clicking photo below.
    RPAU Exclusives
    RPAU's Exclusive Interview with Robert Pattinson on the Red Carpet at The Rover Premiere Sydney Film Festival 2014.

    Robert Pattinson and David Michôd respond to RPAU's Question at the Official Sydney Press Conference for The Rover June 2014.

    Other interviews with RPAU on the Red Carpet at The Rover Premiere Sydney Film Festival 2014 can be found at The Rover Master Post.
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